NanoEngineering Master’s Degree Program

The program offers the M.S. degree in NanoEngineering under both the Thesis (Plan I) and the Comprehensive Examination (Plan II). The requirements for the M.S. degree are as follows:

  1. All students must complete a total of thirty-six units.
  2. All students must complete five Mandatory Core Courses (NANO 201, 202, 203, 204, 205) and one course from any focus area selected from an approved list of graduate courses with the consent of a faculty advisor.Enrollment in NANO 200, as required. See “Courses” for descriptions.
  3. Students either complete a thesis (Plan I) or pass a comprehensive examination (Plan II) as described in the “Graduate Studies” section of this catalog.
  4. Students must meet all other requirements established by the university.

The three focus areas and related courses are:
Focus 1 – Biomedical Nanotechnology: NANO 210, 242, 243, 244, 247A, 247B, 247C, 262.
Focus 2 – Molecular & Nanomaterials: NANO 227, 230, 234, 239, 242, 250, 251A, 251B, 252, 253, 263
Focus 3 – Nanotechnologies for Energy and the Environment: NANO 212, 255, 257, 258, 259, 260, 261


Students who transfer with some graduate credit or an M.S. from another institution will have their records reviewed by a faculty advisor, and an appropriate individual course of study may be approved. The M.S. program is intended to extend and broaden an undergraduate education with fundamental knowledge in different fields. The degree may be terminal, or obtained on the way to the Ph.D. The degree is offered under both the Thesis Plan I and the Comprehensive Examination Plan II.


M.S. Time Limit Policy: Full-time M.S. students are permitted seven quarters in which to complete all requirements. While there is no written time limit for part-time students, the department has the right to intervene and set individual deadlines if it becomes necessary.


Course requirements: All M.S. students must complete a total of thirty-six units, which include a core of five courses (twenty units).


No more than a total of eight units of NANO 296 and 298 may be applied toward the course work requirement. Units in seminars (NANO 200 and 279) may not be applied toward the degree requirement.


Thesis Plan I: Completion of the research thesis (NANO 299) fulfills twelve (12) units toward the total graduation requirement. The balance is made up of the five (5) core courses (twenty (20) units) and one additional elective course (four (4) units) subject to the restrictions described above.


Comprehensive Examination Plan II: This plan involves course work only and culminates in an oral comprehensive examination based on topics selected from the core courses. In addition to the five (5) core courses (twenty (20) units), one must choose an additional four electives (sixteen (16) units) subject to the restrictions of NANO 279, 296, and 298 described above. A student should consult their academic advisor to choose an appropriate course schedule.

A sample program is shown:

Change of Degree: Upon completion of the requirements for the M.S. degree, students admitted as M.S. only or M.S. candidates are not automatically eligible for admission to the Ph.D. Program. ‘M.S.-only’ and ‘M.S.’ candidates who subsequently wish to pursue a doctorate must submit an application for a change in status to their examining committee. The application, if approved by the committee, must be signed by a faculty member who expects to serve as the student’s Ph.D. advisor. The student must also submit a general petition for graduate students to effect the change of status. If the student elects the comprehensive examination plan for the M.S. degree, the examining committee may recommend that the comprehensive examination replace the preliminary qualifying examination expected of Ph.D. students, but must be passed at the 70% grade.